Posts tagged North Europe

Letters from Latvia: One Artistic Day in Riga

Dear travellers, welcome to the new post! Today we continue our story in the capital of Latvia. Many people call Riga the “Pearl of the Baltic” which this city really deserves. In today’s post, I’m going to take you to one that is considered to be one of the biggest artistic treasures in the Baltic. Sometimes beauty is really only in the eye of the beholder, and I am sure that with my post today I will convince you.

In the previous post – link, we started our adventure in Riga, so if you missed to read it or you want to remind yourself about some details you should do it before you continue with reading this post.

Another beautiful morning in Riga dawned, so my photographer and I had to get ready for a special day, because an exciting day was waiting for us. Everything was organised by our organizers of this unusual trip and without which this project would not be possible – Riga Tourist Organization – Live Riga and the national Latvian airline airBaltic. This trip really changed my image of the cold Baltic, and I realized that their culture and lifestyle was somewhat similar to ours in Serbia. Of course, this journey also convinced me that the distances still somehow connect us.

On the way to the Latvian National Gallery of Art, we had the opportunity to see the largest Orthodox shrine in Riga – the “Church of the Nativity of Christ” is the largest Orthodox church in Riga, which in the Soviet era played the role of a planetarium and restaurant, but again became a sacral building where they hold regular liturgies.

When we talk about sacral structures, we can say that they represent a mirror of the society in which they were created and a reflection of the whole culture of a nation. Thus, except for religious ceremonies, the church has always served for social gatherings and has been the center of cultural life.

You can visit this magnificent building in the Esplanade Park located in the heart of Riga! The Church of the Nativity of Christ is an architectural gem and a symbol of stability, which anyone to visit who needs comfort and refuge.

As I promised you, I will now tell you more about the Latvian National Museum of Art. The collection of the largest art museum in Latvia contains more than 50 thousand works of Baltic and Russian painters and sculptors.

In addition to the basic exhibits, this museum regularly offers various temporary exhibitions. Visitors can take advantage of special educational programs and guided tours. One of the continuing exhibitions is “19th – 20th Century of Latvian Art” offers the entire history of Latvian art in the 19th and 20th centuries. The exhibition includes masterpieces by the founders of the Summer National Painting School – Wilhelms Purvitis, Janis Rozentals, Johans Valters. The new art showroom is located at -1 level, where you can always see a modern exhibition on current topics and works of modern art.

The museum is housed in a building in Riga that is of great historical importance. The building on Janis Rozentals Square 1 was designed by German architect Vilhelm Neumann and was built in 1905. It is one of the most impressive historic buildings on the boulevard and is adjacent to the Academy of Arts.

It was the first building in the Baltic to be built for museum purposes. The last reconstruction lasted almost 5 years and was completed in late 2015.

According to some historical records in 1869, it is thought that a museum was founded when the City Art Gallery was opened. In 1905 the museum was renamed the “Riga City Museum of Art”, 1940. The name was changed to “Soviet Art Museum of LSSR” in 1945 – State Latvian and Russian Art Museum of LSSR, 1964 – Museum of Art of LSSR.

In 1987, the museum was renamed as the “National Museum of Art”, and in 1995 it was given the name that we all know today – the “Latvian National Museum of Art“. Initially, the museum consisted mainly of works by foreign artists from several private collections. Wilhelms Purvitis, director of the museum from 1919 to 1940, made it possible to collect works by renowned Latvian authors.

The concept of the oldest art stage in Latvia was created by local German painters Johann Heinrich Baumann, Johann Leebereht Eggin, Alexander Heibel and others. The special collection of Latvian artists (late 18th – first half of the 20th century) includes more than 300 artists and 3,300 works of art. This permanent exhibition gives visitors an insight into the development of Latvian art, created by the work of Karl Hoon, Karl Petersone, Julius Feder, the first Latvian art group “Dwarf” and its creator Adam Alksna.

The museum owns the largest collection of works by academician J. Feder – about 300 drawings, paintings and sketches. The museum’s collection contains large collections of paintings of national classics of Latvian art – Janis Rozentals, Vilhelm Purvitis, Johann Valter.

Also prominent are Voldemars Matveys, Jacobs Caxax, Jazeps Groswalds, Conrads Ubans, Valdemars Tone, Janis Liepins, Leo Svemps, Nikolas Strunke, Ludolfs Liberts, Janis Tidemanis, Eduards Kalnins, Karlis Miesnieks and others.

The Contemporary Art Collection combines the collections of the former City Museum of the City of Riga and the National Museum of Latvia, or both major collections of Latvian war art, as well as items from earlier collections – Friedrich Vilhelm Brederlo, Riga Art Society (Kunstverein), Latvian Association for the Promotion of Art in Latvia.

In 2018, the museum received a cultural award for the great success of the Baltic Symbolism exhibition at the Paris Museum Orsay.

If you visit Riga I think you should visit this museum, the ticket price is around 3 – 4 euros and I think you would enjoy the beauty of classical and modern art. As I said at the very beginning of this post, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and I think you would surely find works of art you would enjoy.

After an few hours long visit to the museum, it was time for little Mark to go and buy some presents and little things for his friends. I decided to share with you a few interesting shops in Riga where you can buy interesting gifts for your loved ones and friends.

RIIJA is a Specialized Concept Store located in the heart of Riga in the main street of Terbatas Iela, offering an eclectic range of Latvian designers’ products, from housewares and freestyle clothes to original furniture, cutlery and lighting. All products are designed and crafted by local designers, representing the label’s blend of traditional Latvian craft with a contemporary worldview. I am sure you will find something interesting, I bought jewelry for my dear ladies and it was on a good discount. You can find the address of this store in Riga at the LINK.

The next interesting store I visited was MANILLA. This is the place where huge fans of paper and pretty things and creatives meet! The Manilla shop is the result of a great love for paper and a love for paper things that you hold in your hand and cannot simply let go. Manilla is little more than a small shop in downtown Riga – a small oasis for all paper and design lovers who need to touch the surface of the paper to feel life, who can truly appreciate the warm greetings printed in a modern greeting card, who really believes it is Gift packaging is as important as its contents or planner and a notebook for them is an accessory that makes everyday life more interesting and beautiful.

Having bought everything I needed for dear people, I decided to sit on a bench in one of Riga’s many parks and enjoy the beauty of nature. Of course, for me, the only thing left is to do after I spent all of the money! Of course it is a joke, I always try to attract myself to dear people and I buy interesting gifts and I have never regretted buying some interesting gifts for people who I respect and my family.

To be honest, it didn’t even take me an hour to sit on the bench to rest. Riga is a small town, but when you are actively walking there it is normal to get tired. I was also tired of the previous trips which I had this summer, so it kind of caught up with me!

Okay, in the end I had to find some strength to continue exploring Riga. Since we had a couple of bags we decided it was best to go back to the hotel and return to a new part of town and continue our research. The picture you can see below has one interesting story…

On my way back to the hotel with heavy bags in my hands, I wanted to take pictures of the old part of town with the people on the street as it was ideal natural lighting… Of course the photographer since had a heavy backpack with two laptops (he was mine there too since I was a little scattered on trips) ) and busy hands over bags of things we bought (you’ll understand if I say that the reductions were literally 70-80% off…) and a shoulder bag.

Now imagine the scene, the photographer I threatened to rub her shoulder with, still hold one bag in my teeth, hold the camera with one hand and try to find the focus…. it’s not going… again i put the camera back on the photographer’s shoulder to zoom in better with the same hand since my bags were in my other hand. I take the camera again and the impatient photographer moves because photographer will no longer want to stay in the same place otherwise all the bags would finish in garbage bin that was on the side street next to us… well, at the end I got at least some photo, it is not perfect, but if we take in considering the situation it’s perfect!

Afterwards I met in town with my mother who enthusiastically showed me this interesting shop in the heart of the old part of Riga. I was most attracted to the advertising slogan on the store window: “Life is too short for ugly shoes.” The store is otherwise held by a funny Italian who is trying to crack classic Italian music from the store. I love the Italian mentality and their lifestyle is always “Dolce far niente! – blissful idleness or what my mother would say “The sweetness in life when your money falls from the sky and you don’t have to work.”

P.S. Mom bought the moccasins in the right angle, that are a combination of beige, light blue, and navy colors for some really symbolic price. Yes… again we bought almost a number and a half smaller shoes, but who asks when it’s a good deal! Our magical shoemaker in Serbia managed to extend them!

In the picture above you can see the oldest and narrowest street in Riga. It is so interesting, isn’t it? My dear adventurers, once again we have come to the end of our second and last blog post from Riga. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! At the end of this post, I would like to thank my friends from Tourism Board of Riga – Live Riga and airBaltic for this incredible adventure and Pullman Old Town Riga Hotel for their huge efforts to make our stay unforgettable and I felt like at home.

How do you like this story about Latvian National Gallery of Art? Have you maybe had a chance to visit Riga and to enjoy in the beauty of Latvia? I would like to share with me your experience! See you soon on some other interesting destination!

If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

Best,
Mr.M

This post was sponsored by Riga Tourism Board – Live Riga and the national Latvian airline company airBaltic and Pullman Old Town Hotel Riga. I also thank my friends from Sony who made it possible to enjoy in these beautiful photos made with the Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera with Sony FE 24-70 mm lense from special G Master series of professional lenses.
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Letters from Latvia: Explore Riga with airBaltic!

My dear travellers, how are you doing today? 2nd of September is a special day for me because that day in my calendar is marked as the happiest day in year – my birthday. I have to admit when I was younger I was not a fan of that date because that was a time when was school going to start. I always thought I was biggest jinx in the world because I was born on that day! Obviously, It was destined because I was unplanned and I came into this world exactly two months before the expected date.

What is the life… On this day twenty-something years ago, one little mumbled baby called Marko came. It’s much easier nowadays, my generation was warlike when inflation reigned in hospitals they didn’t even know what an incubator was. The nurses and the doctor who took care of me gave me the nickname “Crumb” because I was a little heavier than a loaf of bread, today the weight has changed a little! 🙂

But let me get to the topic of today’s post. A few days ago I promised you a new story and that we will explore the pearl of the Baltic, the capital of Latvia – Riga. By the invitation of the Riga Tourism Board – Live Riga and the National Latvian Airline airBaltic, little Marko and his photographer visited the capital of Latvia.

Riga for sure has marked this summer in a special way for me because it was also my last collaboration to close the “summer season” on my blog. The largest metropolis in the Baltic, Riga perfectly blends a timeless tradition and a superb modern atmosphere. In its turbulent history of almost 800 years, everyone from the German knights to the Swedish kings and Soviet commissioners left their mark, and today the capital of Latvia is an exciting European metropolis at the crossroads of Eastern and Northern Europe.

This visit would not have been possible without the help of the National Latvian Airline AirBaltic, which was one of the main partners of this project. The Latvian airline Air Baltic Corporation (airBaltic) was founded in 1995. AirBaltic is a hybrid airline that takes all the best practices from the business of traditional online airlines and low cost carriers in Europe and the world. In 2008, airBaltic changed its operating model from a carrier to a point – a network airline, making Riga a hub between east and west. AirBaltic’s main priorities are – safety, accuracy and quality of service.

Currently airBaltic operates direct flights from all capitals of the Baltic States – Riga (Latvia), Vilnius (Lithuania) and Tallinn (Estonia). AirBaltic offers convenient flights connecting North Hub Riga to its airline partner networks covering Europe, Scandinavia, Russia and the Middle East. It was a great pleasure for me to work with an airline such as airBaltic and to feel all the benefits of their business class.

As a business class traveler, you will receive outstanding service. Priority boarding, welcome drink, seating with additional free seating for more privacy, gourmet meal with three course menu, unlimited non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, the latest printed media, as well as a quick priority exit upon the end of the flight.

Riga Airport is easy to navigate, because of its size and simplicity, trust me you will get out fast and head for exploring Riga. There are several ways of transportation to the center of Riga: by public transport – by bus or taxi. Since we had the transportation provided in advance, I can tell you the prices.

One-way bus fares cost € 1.15 if you buy in advance or at the vending machine or € 2 if you pay directly with the bus driver. When we talk about taxi services you have a Baltic Taxi and a special 15 euro one way fare, so if travel in the group of 3 or 4 people go you can split the cost.

The first thing I could see through the car window was the fact that Riga was a “green” city, on all sides there were green areas, squares, parks that were unusually arranged. Beauty is always in the eye of the beholder, but Riga at very first sight brought a smile to my face. I knew this trip was going to be another beautiful adventure.

We settled into a hotel, freshened up a bit and were ready to go. Our Pullman Old Town Riga hotel was located in the heart of the old part of town. One thing I learned from traveling is that you should always start every city tour with a tour of the old town to get to know the city better. The old part of the city always has some special energy and that is what makes each city special, just like Skadarlija, the bohemian quarter gives Belgrade some note of the beauty where the cultural “creme de la creme” of high society gathered. I would love to write some basic information about the destination itself as I always do.

Riga is the capital of Latvia with a population of just over 600,000 inhabitants which is one third of the Latvian population. Being significantly larger than other cities in Latvia, Riga is also the largest city in Latvia. It is also the largest city in the three Baltic States and home to one tenth of the combined population of all three Baltic States. The city lies on the Gulf of Rome at the mouth of the Daugava River where it meets the Baltic Sea. Riga was founded in 1201 and is a former member of the Hanseatic League.

The historical center of Riga is on the UNESCO World Heritage List, known for its Art Nouveau – Jugendstil architecture and 19th century wooden architecture. Riga was the European Capital of Culture during 2014, along with Umea in Sweden. Riga hosted the NATO Summit in 2006, the Eurovision Song Contest in 2003, the 2006 Men’s Ice Hockey World Championship. An interesting fact is that almost one million tourists visit Riga every year!

There are more legends, theories about how the city got its name. One theory about the origin of the name Riga is that it is a corrupt borrowing that marks the Liv ring, and refers to an ancient natural harbor formed by the tributary of the Daugava River.

Another legend is that Riga owes its name to an already established role in trade between East and West. The English geographer Richard Hackluit in 1589 calls Rija a name, and the German historian Dionysius Fabricius confirmed the origin of Riga in 1610 from the word Rija. A third theory could be that Riga is named after Riege, the German name for the Riden River, a tributary of Daugava.

One theory is that the name Riga was introduced by Bishop Albert, the initiator of the baptism and conquest of the Livonian and Baltic peoples. He also presented an explanation of the name of the city as derived from the Latin word rigete (“irrigated”), which symbolizes “the irrigation of pagan souls by Christianity.”

The locals you see in the picture above in Riga are called the House of the Blackheads (Latvian: Melngalvju nams,) is a building located in the old part of town. The original building was built during the 14th century for the time of the Brotherhood of the Blackheads, as a kind of association for the unmarried, shipowners and foreigners in Riga. The main works were made at the beginning of the 17th century, adding most of the mannerist decoration. The sculptures were made by August Volz’s workshop. The building was bombed by the Germans on June 28, 1941, and the remains were demolished by the Soviets in 1948. It was restored between 1996 and 1999 and what we have today to see is an identical replica of the original building.

Riga is an exceptional city and very organised. Besides being able to enjoy the beauty of the city and make beautiful pictures for your album, you can also do some nice shopping. In addition to the many interesting shops that have local and Baltic designers, there are plenty of outlet shops. In the heart of the city, there are at least 50 outlet shops that have different brands from street brands to some more luxurious, prestigious brands.

You should not hesitate, believe me I found such a beautiful turtleneck sweater and sweater from one brand I adore and I paid it only 35 euros, the full price would be much, much higher. That is my most sincere recommendation if you find yourself in this beautiful city.

The streets of the old town are paved with cobblestones, so it is very important to wear comfortable footwear. In the old part of Riga there are the most beautiful restaurants, museums and hotels. Most interesting to me were street musicians and artists who were entertaining the tourists. Riga is a city of culture and art, believe me in this city you have time for everything because the city is well organised and you can easily find everything that interests you.

You can see the church of St. Peter in the picture above. It is first mentioned in records from 1209. The church was built and went undamaged in a major city fire in Riga that year. The history of the church can be divided into three distinct periods: two related to the Gothic and Romanesque styles of construction, and the third to the early Baroque period. The middle part of the church was built in the 13th century, which covers the first period of construction. The only remnants of this period are found in the outer walls of the nave and on the inside of several columns in the winding, around which larger columns were later built.

During World War II, the church lost its status as an important cultural heritage – an impressive bronze candelabrum made in 1596 – which was taken by the Germans from Riga to the city of Vłocłavek and moved during the Heim ins Reich campaign to Poland. The candelabrum, called the standing lantern, was commissioned by Riga City Council from Riga Foundry Founder Hans Meyer. To give an idea of the order of size of this standing lantern it was about 3 m high and about 4 m wide.

After the war he was exhibited at St. Mary’s Cathedral of the Assumption in the Vłocłavek Basilica. On March 1, 2012, this work of late Renaissance art returned to its home, as a result of an agreement on the repatriation of cultural property. An interesting fact is that the rooster statue that you can see at the top of the church weighs about 160 kg, and it’s made of gold.

Freedom Monument (Latvian: Brivibas piemineklis) is a monument honoring soldiers killed during the Latvian War of Independence (1918–1920). It is considered an important symbol of the freedom, independence and sovereignty of Latvia. Built in 1935, 42 meters high in granite, travertine and copper, it often serves as a focal point for public gatherings and official ceremonies in Riga. The sculptures and reliefs of the monument, divided into thirteen groups, depict Latvian culture and history.

The core of the monument consists of rectangular shapes that are arranged one on top of one another, decreasing in size towards the top, complemented by a 19-meter (62-meter) high travertine pole bearing a copper figure of freedom that raises three gilded stars. The concept of the monument was first publicly announced in the early 1920s, when the Latvian prime minister ordered the conceptual designs to be drawn up and a competition for the design of a “memorial column” opened. After several public competitions, the monument was finally built in the early 1930s under the scheme “Mirdzi ka zvaigzne!” The construction work was funded by private donations.

There were already German-language theaters in Riga, which also had opera and ballet. The first attempt to create the Latvian National Opera was in 1893, when the “Spoku stunda” by Jekabs Ozols (“The Hour of the Spirits”) was performed. The Latvian Opera and Ballet (Latviešu Opera) was founded in 1912 by Pavuls Jurjans, although almost immediately during the First World War, the opera group was evacuated to Russia. In 1918, the opera was restarted (Latvia Opera) led by Jazeps Vitols, founder of the Latvian Academy of Music. The debut performance, January 23, 1919, was Wagner’s “Der fliegende Hollander”.

Since 1944, after the occupation of Latvia by the Soviet Union and its incorporation into the Soviet Union, the Latvian National Opera became the Latvian S.S.R. State Opera and Ballet Theater. In 1990, the theater was renamed the Latvian National Opera, but the building was closed almost immediately until 1995 for renovation. In honor of its reopening in 1995, the first opera was Uguns un nakts by Janis Medins (Fire and Night).

My dear adventurers, once again we have come to the end of our post. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! At the end of this post, I would like to thank my friends from Tourism Board of Riga – Live Riga and airBaltic for this incredible adventure and Pullman Old Town Riga Hotel for their huge efforts to make our stay unforgettable and I felt like at home.

How do you like this story about this gem of the Baltic? Have you maybe had a chance to visit Riga and to enjoy in the beauty of Latvia? I would like to share with me your experience! In a couple of days we will continue our adventure in Riga. I will show you one art treasury, the biggest one in Latvia, so be ready! I am sure you will like it as I do. 🙂

If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

Best,
Mr.M

This post was sponsored by Riga Tourism Board – Live Riga and the national Latvian airline company airBaltic and Pullman Old Town Hotel Riga. I also thank my friends from Sony who made it possible to enjoy in these beautiful photos made with the Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera with Sony FE 24-70 mm lense from special G Master series of professional lenses.
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Letters from Finland: One interesting day in Rovaniemi

My dear travellers, I think now is just a perfect time to read another letter from Finland. I sincerely hope that you are doing good to and you are on some vacation, whether if you have been able to travel somewhere or relax at home, vacation is a very important thing to people who works, they need to relax! First of all, I would like to thank you for the wonderful comments you sent me for the previous post, as well and the wonderful messages and questions that you send me to the Instagram about Azerbaijan.

Today on the blog we continue our adventure in Finland, but I promise you that within a few days we will officially “start” our adventure in Azerbaijan! In the previous post, you had the opportunity to meet my new furry friends – Huskies with whom I had the opportunity to hang out. If you are interested to remind a little or you have missed a chance to read my previous post from Lapland, please take time and click on this LINK.

Of course before I start today I would like to thank the team from the Rovaniemi Tourist Board – Visit Rovaniemi as well as the national Finnish airline company Finnair on this wonderful trip. This trip was an incredible experience, which I will for sure remember, for a lifetime.

Today I have set myself a special task, which is to prove that Rovaniemi and Lapland are not only the land of Santa Claus and the cute Reindeers, but that there is also something else that this area is known for. Also, some of you have sent me the questions: “Is it worth it to go to Finnish Lapland in the summer time? Is there anything special and interesting to be seen? ” In a way, for us from the Europe, Finland is one cold Northern European country and rather unexplored country, but that does not mean that it is a country where 365 days of snow and that it is only known by Santa Claus. My shortest possible answer to the previous questions would be: “Yes, there is a lot of interesting things to see!”.

To understand what I’m talking about, I think you should read this post till the end. Have you ever wondered how daily life in the Finnish part of Lapland looks like? How to live in the Arctic? What is the Arctic Circle?

To find out something new and by the way maybe to provide answers to all these questions, the first station in Rovaniemi would be the Arktikum – Science Center and Museum.

Arktikum is a science center and museum located in the center of the city and with its modern look, attract views of tourists. This is the perfect first “station” you need to visit because it will help you to get to know Rovaniemi and the Arctic area better.

The first interesting thing you will notice at the entrance to this museum is a beautiful glass dome over the main hall, and if you look better, you will see a finger-shaped dome that “shows” to the North Pole. At the Arktikum Museum, you always have interesting and educational exhibitions that are interactive, so that they have made every effort to enjoy, while discovering some new interesting facts about the Arctic.

The first exhibition which I visited was dedicated to the history of the city of Rovaniemi, as well as the regions themselves. In addition, you have the opportunity to learn about Saami people. Saami are indigenous inhabitants of the Arctic region of the Sapmi, which includes today’s space of Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola peninsula in Russia. They are the only remaining autochthonous people of the European Union who lived in Lapland even before the national borders were established and their history was nearly 7,000 years old.

In addition, you can find out a lot of historical facts related to Rovaniemi, such as what happened to the city after the Second World War, as well as the remaining animal and plant species found in this region.

Rovaniemi, like the whole of Lapland, had an interesting history. The city developed until the Second World War when it was literally completely destroyed, and after that the city was completely rebuilt out of the ashes again. Only a few objects have “survived” the attack, and one of them is the building of today’s Korundi, a gallery of modern art. I promise that I will write about this art gallery about this extraordinary treasury of contemporary art.

It is believed that this region was a settlement 7,000 years ago, when the first representatives of the Saami people who came to these area. They developed some basics of the exchange of goods, which were just the roots of some trade systems that we know today.

In my head it goes like this: “Buyer: Hello, can I get these boots for 4 salmons? Seller: It’ ok! (or seller wants to bargain and raise the value of his goods).

This exhibition is really incredible because you have the opportunity to experience the cold Arctic in another way and just to see that life is happening there in a similar way as it was in other parts of Europe and the world.

Of course, in addition to learn more about the progress of society, you also realize that nature is also the most important thing which need to think about and take care. This region has an extremely rich herbs world and Arctic animal breeds.

I personally saw one beautiful owl and some other animals in just one day, but that does not mean you will not meet a wolf or a polar squirrel. Who knows, everything is possible!

I must admit that the Arktikum was one of the most interesting museums that I had the opportunity to visit in my whole blogging career. It’s simply incredible how much a person can learn something new and useful through some interesting exhibitions in the museum.

Lapland is a place where you can find some reindeers and mooses more than people! (of course that is one local joke) I am sure that this land has more than one species of these deers than dogs, and this is a sign that nature is in the strong connection with the people in Lapland.

After the story of the history of this city, as well as of the entire Arctic region, you continue your journey to the second part of the Arktikum museum, where there is an exhibition that explains some of the natural phenomena.

In this part of the world, there are known natural phenomena that occur in various seasons. For example, in the winter, polar light appears. Today, this is just a beautiful colours on the pictures on Instagram, but in some past times people were afraid of this incredible phenomenon.

There are more legends, but one of the most interesting is the myth of Polar Fox. “When the winter comes, the fox can’t be calm, she jumps through the sky, and with the tip of her tail, she forms certain parts, and thus, those unreal rays of green color appear in the sky. It was not a good sign, ghosts are not happy! ”

The natural phenomenon I must admit most of all is the phenomenon known as “Midnight Sun” that occur in the summer months from the beginning of June to the middle of July, and during that period the Sun does not go down at all.

Imagine seeing the sun at midnight or at 1 o’clock in the morning… Oh yes, there is no sleeping at all! I think that this part of the world is ideal for us bloggers, because we can work literally 24 hours a day, just to take photos of our outfits and finally little Marko can finish all the work on time! 😀

In addition to these famous phenomena, you can find out more about the effect of “Greenhouse Effect” and the problem of the melting of ice on the poles. These are extremely huge problems and we have to treat them all as humanity if we want to survive.

Nature helps us, we can help her and continue the normal flow, and we all live in harmony with nature. So we need a little bit of happiness, why should we ruin it all?

Well, after we have a little thought about our current state as humanity and if we have awakened the consciousness, I think that it requires a cultural upbringing. If you remember, I mentioned to you that Rovaniemi during the Second World War had literally been destroyed and that a couple of buildings had survived the attack.

One of these buildings is today’s building, which is home of the Korundi Modern Art Gallery. Korundi is a real treasury, where you can find exclusively some master-pieces of modern art.

A few years ago, Rovaniemi city administration has decided to help young artists and encourage their work. For some time they thought how to help develop creativity and keep young hopes and Korundi opened its doors to all young artists.

As an ordinary observer, who really does not understand the true value of these works, I enjoyed conversation with my guide, who was trying hard to explain their way of working.

New art workshops were opened, young artists opened their art schools, and I had the opportunity to see how a young artist taught some seniors how to develop their talent for painting, completely free!

I thought that artist can not live normally, but it seems that it’s just about how much consciousness is developed about the need for art. Maybe I do not know the value of all these artworks, but I realised that I was staying in front, while I was sitting and watching some kind of modern art, I was calm down in some unusual way.

Maybe I do not understand art, but that does not mean that I can not understand how to enjoy their beauty. Still the beauty of the work itself is in the eye of the observer.

My day in Rovaniemi was fulfilled and I did not feel any special tiredness, I think this was a form of educational vacation where I learned a lot of new things that I was interested in, so maybe that’s why I’m excited as I write this post now.

Of course, this blogger must have something to eat, so I received a recommendation from the Rovaniemi Tourism Board to try some local cuisine in Rakas restaurant. My photographer only love this part of our trips when we are going to eat, so the team from the tourist board and the restaurant itself wanted to prove their culinary skills…

My photographer is more of a type of “meat” lover person, but I decided to eat some vegetables this time because this blogger got a little weight up, so there was something wrong with the jeans, so I had to go on the diet.

My dear travellers, once again we have come to the end of our post. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! At the end of this post, I would like to thank my friends from Visit Rovaniemi for this incredible adventure and Arctic Light Hotel for their huge efforts to make our stay unforgettable and I felt like at home.

How do you like this post about Lapland? Have you ever visited Rovaniemi? Have you maybe had a chance to visit Finland before? I would like to share with me your experience!

In a couple of days we will continue our adventure in Lapland, and I will introduce you with the most beloved man in the world – Santa Claus! I can’t wait to share all those beautiful photos with you. Stay tuned!

If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

Best,
Mr.M

This post was sponsored by Visit Rovaniemi Tourist Board and the main partners of this project Finnair National Finnish airline company and Arctic Light Hotel. I also thank my friends from Arktikum Science Centre and Museum, Korundi Art Gallery, Rakas Restaurant and my friends from Sony who made it possible to enjoy in these beautiful photos made with the Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera with Sony FE 24-70 mm lense from special G Master series of professional lenses.
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Letters from Finland: Last Call for Helsinki

My dear travellers and fashionistas, today I have prepared for you a special treat, because I realized that I missed to share with you one fashion-travel story from Finland. This post will also be the real ending of my incredible adventure that I experienced in the capital of Finland – Helsinki. For those who first read my blog and want to learn more about Helsinki, read the previous posts on this link, I’m sure you will love this lovely city in Northern Europe and will dissolve your heart.

Some people say that memories are not so important and after some time they will disappear from our memory… I disagree with this because I am sure that all the beautiful things that happened to us, all journeys and important memories remain in our subconscious and only is the question of the moment when our mind will again decide to remind us of those same nice moments! ? Since my adventure in Finland, it’s been a couple of months ago, but I still remember the crazy wind that was blowing during our last day in Helsinki.

I would like to back again there, before I start with today’s post I would like to say huge thank you to wonderful Elisabeth from My Helsinki and that I was the part of amazing #MyHelsinkiResidence project. Also, I would like to say thank you to all partners of this project and I hope we will work again soon!

I remember well that we took photos of this same outfit for two days because of the wind and I managed to make some nice pictures for this post, but I completely forgot about these pictures because after Finland I quickly got sick, and the trip to Cyprus followed up after and I completely has forgotten about these pictures. A couple of days ago, a boy from Bosnia and Herzegovina sent me an e-mail that he saw a nice black jacket in the first post from Helsinki, but he did not find a fashion post from Finland with that same jacket and he sent my picture in that black jacket as attachment.

After reading the email, I was not lazy, so I opened my blog and started looking for a post with this black jacket, so I realized that I actually forgot to post these pictures… Helsinki, a cold city with a warm heart was the perfect city for taking pictures of this fashion combination.

I am from those people who think that black colour looks much better on other persons than me and I have always tried to avoid black and grey colours. My mom who always had a great influence on my fashion taste and style always said one and the same sentence: “Marko, my dear child black is not the right colour for you… You are guy with the darker shade of hair, the black colour looks much better on blond person. Simply black on black, it doesn’t go so easily! “. That’s why I’ve always tried to not wear black clothes, maybe I used to have some black trousers, but I was trying to make clothes which going closer to my face to be brighter and cheerful colors, just to look more refreshing.

My best friends from Burberry wanted to send us blogger early gifts for Christmas so I got this jacket at my home address, which I really did not hope for because they wanted to surprise us with a gift for the holidays, and we had the opportunity to complete the outfit after with some other stuff. Since I picked out these gray pants that you see on the pictures and one sweeter orange color, I realized that I made a big contrast, so I decided to take the photos of a sweater another time, so I did not carry it on a trip to Finland.

Honestly, I was planning to shoot this outfit with one turtleneck sweater, which I bought in Zara, so I took it on the trip with me. Like everything else in my life, everything is so complicated, so I managed to burn my favourite roll neck sweater with the help of iron machine that I did not obviously knew to use it properly, because it was totally different with a bunch of options, I hoped that I managed to fit everything nicely, but the wool that sticked to the plate of the iron, so the sweater was burned there…

I was wrong, it was my favorite a piece in the wardrobe, since my skin is very sensitive to the wool, it’s easy to notice an allergic reaction on my skin somehow I succeeded with the softener after a couple of washes to make it good for my skin. Now that same sweater was destroyed, after 3 years of careful using and storage…

After half an hour of criticising myself and few chocolate bites, the photographer told me that he noticed in the past days that there was some special sale note in the window of the Zara, so we went out of the apartment without breakfast and went to Zara. There I found this sweater that fit perfectly and for 12 euros I got a new favourite fashion piece from Zara. Someone will say that the sweater may be a bit “old” for me, but I liked it at first sight and I think it can be combined easily because of these pastel colours stripes.

The last day in Helsinki ended, little Marko almost late for his flight, because the last train with which I could get on time went, luckily the tourist board had an understanding for me, so they helped me with the transport and everything was better than what I could imagine would ever be in my life. Sometimes people are needed for true happiness much less than some people think. I wanted to make nice photos, but I did not think about the time as always…

My dear ones, once again we have come to the end of this special fashion outfit post from Helsinki. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and soon I will start collaboration with one worldwide airline and this year will be full of adventures and excitements, so be prepared!

Last day in Helsinki was so sad because we left our Aallonkoti apartment where we had feeling like we are at our home. Thank you for having us for a wonderful week, I hope we will see again!

OUTFIT

Jacket: Burberry

Sweater: Zara

Trousers: Burberry

Boots: Makia

Camera: Sony Alpha 7r Mark II

 

At the end of the post, I would like to thank my friends from the Burberry and Makia who made my day with these nice clothes and I hope that I have succeeded to show you this elegant black combination.

How do you like this outfit? Have you prepared your closet for spring maybe? If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you! Now I will leave you just to enjoy in this beautiful landscape and of course the symbol of Helsinki – Helsinki Cathedral.

Best,

Mr.M

This post is sponsored by Tourist Board of Helsinki – My Helsinki, Aallonkoti Hotel Apartments, Makia brand, Burberry Limited and others partners of My Helsinki organisation which kindly help this #MyHelsinkiResidence project.
For all these beautiful photos I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera.
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Fashionable and Stylish Fall in Tallinn

My dear fashionistas, how are you today? I hope you have used this weekend in the best possible way, even though weather conditions have not been favorable to us these days. Today I present to you a special fashion story from the capital of Estonia. I must admit that I have been thinking a lot today about the title of this post because Tallinn is itself an unusual city. A modern city that has some magical vibe of medieval times, where tradition and culture were at an enviable level. Other values were more valued, art was different, exalted, maybe even had its own cult, which today was visibly faded.

Tallinn is a city with a special energy. One day in early morning, we’re even finished on a cruise. From high dose of excitement I forgot about the umbrella, without telling you how many times I checked the weather forecast last night in Tallinn. Fortunately, when you have a photographer who has travelled almost the whole world, everything has to be in the backpack… In my backpack, there were only basic “survival kit” – a biscuit, a cap, a scarf and a couple of maps from Helsinki (for God sake I really do not understand why I carried with me maps of Helsinki in Tallinn, I will just say God, please help me!) That’s only I can take at 3 am in the morning, I’ll just tell you that I used only the biscuits from all these great stuff which I had in my “survival kit”! ?

We arrived early in the morning in Tallinn, I think it was about 7 am in the morning, I only know that there was no living soul on the street at that time. Well, on the one hand, this is great when you want to have a good photo shooting of fashion outfit for the post. On the other hand, I could not immediately feel the soul of the city, because as we all know the soul of every city, are inhabitants.

All right, it quickly went through that emptiness, as long as I have ended with my biscuit, I heard the first sound of female heels on the streets of Tallinn. I have always admired the women for their ability to maintain balance on heels and also to run on those high heels. What to say, well congratulations you are my heroes! Sometimes, barely I do not know to walk properly with normal flat sneakers on the ground!

Well, after watching a small street fashion show, three best friends go together to some serious business work, one could say that it was a more serious company, perhaps a law office, because all three were perfectly fiddled in toned suits with briefcases and modern bags… Maybe, they are some business women from a serious corporate business world, that we bloggers will never be able to understand.

It was all great, but my photographer was so disturbed by my bright orange turtleneck sweater which by his modest opinion did not fit in with this brown combination… It wasn’t that bad, the first thing – material was a bit thicker than my other beige turtleneck sweater which I planned to I carry with this outfit and the other thing is that I noticed that the facades in Tallinn are mostly bright beige, white colors and I did not want to be part of them! That’s why I combined together nicely and usefully, I did not become part of the Tallinn architecture, but I did not freeze, thanks god. You know, I am from those people who can easily get sick, and because of that I have 9,999 medications in my bag on all my journeys, because you never know what can make me “sick” in one of my adventures.

Luckily, the Main Office of the Tourist Board of Tallinn has opened, so we got some guidelines, how to use a few hours in Tallinn in the best possible way. In the picture above you can see little Marko, the man who “studied” hard the guide through Tallinn.

OUTFIT

Coat: Burberry

Turtleneck sweater: Makia

Jeans: Pedro del Hierro

Sneakers: Sax

Camera: Sony Alpha 7r Mark II

This year, the Autumn have some completely different colors. In Finland and Estonia, everything is all about nature, so I had the opportunity to enjoy the magic of golden autumn because of the rich natural world in Nordic European countries. As I wrote in the previous post, fashion experts said that this season gold colour is in trend, so I can only notice that nature in Helsinki and in Tallinn as well, follows the latest fashion trends! ?

My dear fashionistas once again we have come to the end of this special fashion post from Tallinn. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and we will continue our adventure.

At the end of the post, I would like to thank the friendly staff from Aallonkotti Hotel Apartmentsthat made our stay pleasant and we felt like we were at home. The concept of hotel is to stay in apartments of different sizes. The size of apartments depends on your needs. The apartment in which we had the opportunity to stay was specially decorated by the well-known Finnish brand Marimekko, which besides its basic activity – making clothes has its own special line for home decoration.

How do you like this outfit? Have you ever visited Tallinn? Did you have chance to enjoy in the magic of the Tallinn? I would like to share with me your experience! If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you!

Best,

Mr.M

This post is sponsored by Tourist Board of Tallinn – Visit Tallin, My HelsinkiAallonkoti Hotel Apartments, Marimekko company and others partners of My Helsinki organisation which kindly help this #MyHelsinkiResidence project. I will mention all of them in some of the next posts. For all these beautiful photos I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera.
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Letters from Finland: Korkeasaari, Animal Kingdom

Hello everyone! My dear adventurers, how are you today? It’s time to introduce you to the most unusual zoo in the world, it’s not an ordinary zoo, it’s a real animal kingdom. Korkeasaari, a word that I still do not know how to say, but I was happy to read it on a little board of bus no 16 that can take you directly from the central train station – the heart of the city of Helsinki to the island where the zoo is located .

I think that morning at the station I was the oldest child on the bus, I honestly did not care about that, I just wanted to get to my goal. Sometimes is very hard to think almost about everything, but this time I forgot that the zoo was on the island, I completely distracted myself from the mind that it was windy there and that I should take my cap that I forgot in the apartment. My friends from My Helsinki were so good and they gave me an interesting brown cap as a gift, but I just forgot this time to bring it with me!

The Helsinki Zoo is located around 30 minutes of drive from the centre of the city and in a just 30 minutes you can leave the urban part of Helsinki and enjoy the beauty of the natural and wildlife. Due to the strength of the wind I was not able to take some photos of the approach to the island, the view was absolutely amazing. The picture above was created when we crossed the bridge, at the very entrance to the zoo. The view is enchanting, I was totally speechless!

This island paradise is home to more than 150 animal species and a rich vegetation world that has over 1000 species of plants. There are only few zoo’s on the world that are located on the islands, which is why the zoo in Helsinki is special. It is also one of the oldest zoos in the world, opened its doors in 1889. The zoo works all year round, only the approach of the island depending on the season and weather conditions is different. During the spring, summer and early autumn you can reach the Korkeasaari Zoo with special ferries, while during the late autumn and winter period you arrive by bus number 16, as we did this time.

The Korkeasaari Zoo is divided into several parts. Each part is a special story for itself and it is not important whether you are a child or a child “trapped” in the body of an adult man I am convinced that you will enjoy. There are special facilities throughout the zoo where you can feel the way of life in Finland. Wooden huts by the water, a camp fireplace and facilities built for the purpose of educating children and adults makes this zoo unique in Europe and the world as well.

It was a little harder to get to the monkeys this time because the children of school and preschool age were simply fascinated by the charisma and positivity of these pretty animals. In those days when we were in Helsinki, there was a special holiday for children in Finland that lasted for a week and is special because it is an active holiday for children. Children have planned activities every day, to get to know the world around them much better and learn something new. I really think that we need something similar to do in Serbian education system for preschool and elementary school age children.

This zoo is a great place for all lovers of nature, except that you will be able to spend time and see some of your favorite animals, you can also enjoy in all beauties of the nature. Fashion experts have said that the gold color is in the trend this season, it seems that nature in Finland follows the latest trends! ?

It was interesting to see how trainers and people who care about animal feeding animals. The bears were not in the mood for some photo shooting, since we came to them when it was time for the afternoon nap, so maybe they did not want to cooperate with us this time… Well that is one of the reason why I should come back to Helsinki again!

The reason I wanted to visit this zoo is White Owl. The White Winter Owl always appealed to the famous Hollywood films about the boy wizard Harry Potter. I do not know how familiar you are with this unusual movie hero, but I’m sure that you at least hear about him or some of your younger members of family are usually people who love this magical hero.

Since the main topic in Harry Potter movies are related to paranormal things like magic, they do not use “normal” mail services. All shipments – letters and parcels are sent with the help of white big owls. In Europe I have not noticed that zoos have theses species of owl, but when I saw a white owl on an advertising flyer of Helsinki Zoo, I had to go and see it. If they had let me take her home, I would gladly have it and imagine that I was Harry Potter every day! ?

Due to weather conditions that are slightly colder than in other parts of Europe, the Zoo in Helsinki has made efforts to have only animals that can live in these conditions in their small animal kingdom, there are not many tropical animals here, maybe a small number of bird species from Africa, but they are located in separate indoor buildings that are adapted to their special needs.

In this small animal kingdom you can find various polar mammals that are characteristic of this part of Europe. Deers, Reindeers and other species are the inhabitants of this unusual zoo. I was fascinated by the natural beauty of this paradise. My heart was full, because I had the opportunity to feel at least a couple of hours of all the natural beauty and magic of this natural oasis located not so far from the center of Helsinki.

This guy was not in the mood for photo shooting, but we tried to “capture” him in the best possible pose since we waited him almost 15 minutes to turn! He’s very stubborn! In the end, we somehow managed to capture this beauty on the photo. 🙂

On the other hand, we have this interesting gentle lady, which all those years could not do anything to her, so she is quite fast and very active for her age. In less than 10 minutes, she made full 3 laps without pausing, she greeted us and continued her daily activities.

My dear travellers once again we have come to the end of this second special travel post from Helsinki. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and we will continue our adventure.

At the end of the post, I would like to thank the friendly staff from Aallonkotti Hotel Apartmentsthat made our stay pleasant and we felt like we were at home. The concept of hotel is to stay in apartments of different sizes. The size of apartments depends on your needs. The apartment in which we had the opportunity to stay was specially decorated by the well-known Finnish brand Marimekko, which besides its basic activity – making clothes has its own special line for home decoration.

How do you like this post? Have you ever visited Finland? Did you have chance to enjoy in the magic of the Helsinki? I would like to share with me your experience! If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you!

Best,

Mr.M

This post is sponsored by Tourist Board of Helsinki – My Helsinki, Korkeasaari ZooAallonkoti Hotel Apartments, Marimekko company and others partners of My Helsinki organisation which kindly help this #MyHelsinkiResidence project. I will mention all of them in some of the next posts. For all these beautiful photos I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera.
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Moomin’s Winter in Yellow Helsinki

You must go on a long journey before you can really find out how wonderful home is.

Snufkin (Comet In Moominland)

Hi guys, how are you today? I sincerely hope that you are good and that you are huge fan of Moomins. If your answer is YES, this post is perfect for you!

Today I have an interesting post for you. I will tell you how I managed to fulfill my childhood dream and remember my dear heroes from a famous cartoon – The Moomins. For all those who may not remember or are not familiar with these famous Finnish characters in a series of books, comics and television series, here’s a small reminder! Moomins are a family of white, round fairy tale characters with large snouts that make them resemble hippopotamuses.

This carefree and adventurous family lives in a house in Moominvalley, somewhere in the forests of Finland. In addition to them, books and series mention other characters that may be slightly different from them, but are accepted as part of a family and friends. A very interesting cartoon of my childhood and I’m glad that I had the opportunity to grow up with them, but I was not able to learn the Finnish language! ?

Maybe I did not able to learn Finnish, but I had a chance to visit Helsinki and feel that kind of nature and a slightly different life than we live in Serbia every day. Surely you are all now wondering what the Moomins have to do with this special fashion outfit post from Finland?

During my visit to Helsinki, I received a invitation from the famous Finnish luxury street fashion brand Makia to be one of the brand ambassadors of their brand. Since at a meeting with my friends from the My Helsinki I showed great admiration to their cult series The Moomins and told some situations from my childhood when I watched this famous Finnish television series, they sent it to representatives of the Makia brand and the this unusual cooperation took place.

The Makia brand was founded in Finland in 2001. This brand is a Helsinki based clothing company producing Nordic contemporary designs to stand the test of time, equally in quality and over trends to become a part of our everyday lives. The idea of Makia originates from the need to keep warm in harsh conditions, while befitting a city environment. Makia’s collection is inspired by the history and surroundings of Helsinki Harbour, where the brand’s headquarters are located and has evolved into a full line of garments to shelter you from head to toe.

This year, Makia brand managed to make first collaboration of this type with the Moomins. It is also the first cooperation of this cult Finnish brand like Moomin with a fashion brand such as Makia.

Bright colors, practicality and, of course, the quality of the materials are just a few reasons why this special collection of Makia x Moomin is so special. To me, this yellow jacket made a smile on my face that awakened in me that Little Marko who enjoyed in his favorite cartoon.

Another day in Helsinki has ended, little Marko filled his another childhood dream, and everything was better than I imagined as would ever be in my life. Sometimes, you don’t need a reason for doing everything in your life. Do it because you want to. Because it’s fun. Because it makes you happy.

My dear fashionistas once again we have come to the end of this first special fashion outfit post from Helsinki. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and we will continue our adventure in Finland and Italy as well.

The fourth day in Helsinki ended, tired, but happy we went to our Aallonkoti apartment to fill our “batteries” just to continue our adventure. In the next post I will introduce you to the most beautiful zoo in Europe. It’s on island! I can’t wait to show you everything. 🙂

OUTFIT

Jacket: Makia x Moomin

Turtleneck sweater: Makia

Jeans: Makia

Boots: Makia

Camera: Sony Alpha 7r Mark II

 

At the end of the post, I would like to thank my friends from the Makia who made my day with this new collection and I hope that I have succeeded to refresh this cold winter with these cheerful colours! ?

Perhaps at first sight orange and yellow colours do not combine well, but I learned from my previous experience that people mostly make a mistake when it comes to fashion. One thing is when you see clothes on hangers, but that right comes just by yourself when you dress up those things. You will see all those thing different on your body.

How do you like this post? Have you prepared your closet for new fashion season? If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you!

Best,

Mr.M

This post is sponsored by Tourist Board of Helsinki – My Helsinki, Aallonkoti Hotel Apartments, Makia brand and others partners of My Helsinki organisation which kindly help this #MyHelsinkiResidence project. I will mention all of them in some of the next posts.
For all these beautiful photos I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera.
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Postcard from Estonia: Tallinn, The Medieval Gem of the Baltic

Hi everyone, welcome to my new post! Today is the first day of November and I think that this is more than enough reason to continue our adventure in Northern Europe and thus start this November with a new travel story, you will also learn more about the capital city, one country of Baltic States – Tallinn.

Now I can officially welcome you to Estonia. Estonia is one of the three Baltic states located in the northeastern Europe. The term of the Baltic states stands for the three former Soviet Republics, now the independent republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. This year is very important for Estonia, because this year represents 100 years of the Republic of Estonia.

It was one early morning in Helsinki, I’d better admit to you that we did not even get to sleep at all, because we were expecting cruising to Tallinn in the early hours of the morning. I decided that it would be better for me to get something sweet to bite a little and finish the editing of the pictures of Helsinki, so I did not have a hard time for those few hours without of sleep.

With the late night chit-chats, laugh, snacks and a lot of work, we were up in early morning hours, so we almost got late for the first morning tram which led us directly to the harbour, luckily we all arrived on time at the end! When we arrived at the port, I did not get the impression that I was in front of the harbour , but I thought I was at the airport. Modern, straight lines made of glass and metal, the main harbour in Helsinki at half past six in the morning was shining in its full shine like a diamond.

We have checked in at the counters of Tallink, which is one of the friends of this project #MyHelsinkiResidence and I am pleased that they have provided us their support and enabled the realization of this wonderful project.

Two hours of journey, how much this trip usually lasts between these two “siblings” cities for me was very exciting, first this is my first cruise and just at an entrance of the modern version of the Titanic I realized it will be amazing and unforgettable. The first thing we noticed on the map of the ship is that there is a mini shopping mall and a supermarket on the cruise. The photographer and I were surprised, so I even had to get my glasses to make sure I read it well.

Yes, it turned out that is true… Star, one of the first Tallink cruisers with shops and a supermarket… We could not wait for breakfast, but we immediately went to look for shops, just to be sure that is true. We missed breakfast, but I bought chocolate in supermarket! As I wrote a while ago, time passed and the little Marko arrived in Tallinn. We arrived so quickly on the main square and you can see on the photo above my first reaction and fascination with this medieval city in the modern 21st century!

Our first task was to find the office of the Tallin’s Tourist Board – Visit Tallinn to take over the special Tallinn cards that will help us to visit the sights and museums.

How to get to know Tallinn? Where to start your adventure? – These are questions that almost all tourists are thinking about!

When I want to meet and “feel” the city, I first find the marked sights on the map and select the one that, according to the description of the sight itself, can best “tell” the story of the city. Tallinn is an unusual city, the city’s core has some special energy, which radiates some values that were more appreciated in the Middle Ages, while the periphery is completely modern and urban. It’s amazing how a bus ride can be interesting! My warm recommendation is to start a tour of Tallinn with the Estonian History Museum, located in the very heart of the city.

Time travel can be very fun, who knows, maybe you will learn something new and interesting that you did not know before. The museum is divided into several parts, as a fashion blogger, I’m sure that you all immediately assumed that my the most favorite part was that historic fashion corner. In a special exhibition of clothing you can see how fashion has developed in Estonia from the past to the present modern history of this Baltic country.

I will just say that I am thrilled with fashion development in Estonia, I think you will learn a lot of things about culture and lifestyle of Estonian people. Their culture is magnificent, so please take your time and enjoy. I’m sure you will love it! You also have an interesting part of museum which is interactive and you can “write” your own Estonian history, I tried something, but as I had just few hours in Tallinn I just run to see more sights in Tallinn. Use your time wisely! 🙂

Do you know that the Estonia Spirit is still alive? No?! You must visit him in Estonian History Museum! He is so silly! I’m sure he will make you laugh. Try to chat with him, maybe he will some interesting answers for you, try… You really don’t have anything to lose. 🙂

You will not spend a lot of time in the Museum of Estonian History, but you will learn a lot of new information you did not know about Estonia. After the museum, I suggest you visit the Tallinn’s City Hall, which is the oldest Town Hall in the Baltic region. Because of its uniqueness, it is on the UNESCO list of protected cultural heritage as well as the Tallinn city’s center. If you want to know more about architecture in Tallinn, you absolutely need to read this story.

Walking in the main streets of Tallinn will tell you a special story, enjoy the beauty of the cobblestones and the music of street performers. Souvenir shops, Medieval themed restaurants are just a small piece of puzzle that makes this city so fabulous. Believe me, walking around in the centre of Tallinn is really wonderful, but unfortunately we did not have more time to enjoy in it! 🙁

As we walked through the streets, my photographer heard that many tourists ask the locals for the cathedral of Saint Alexander Nevsky, I was not lazy, so I tried to connect to the WiFi internet network of a nearby café and I realized that we should not miss this beauty. The church is located on a hill, initially you will have the impression that it is far away and that the approach of the church is difficult, but it is not. If you already decided to visit this lovely town, please make sure not to miss this spiritual beauty.

In the next post you will see my fashion combination which I was wearing during my visit to this city. I hope you enjoy in my fashion story, some of the most beautiful photos were made near this temple.

The photographer reminded me that we did not have much time left and that it was time to slowly return to the city so that we would not be late for the bus that directly drives us to the Tallinn’s harbour. I have to admit, the time has just flown and it was not easy for me to just forgive myself why I’m in Tallinn just one day…

As we slowly descended to the city centre, I do not know how, but at one point I noticed the ad with a picture of a beautiful royal orders of Knighthood. First I checked which time it was, the photographer just said: “No way! We’ll be late, you know how much we have to be before boarding, I repeat, there is no chance! “. It would not be me if I did not look at the ad again if I could use the Tallinn card to enter this museum, when I saw a little red sign with white letters written word – Tallinn, I knew it! It was meant to be!

I just took out the card from my backpack and headed towards the entrance to the Museum of Orders of Knighthood, the photographer was outraged… I thought he left me, but he appeared after 5 minutes with the words: “You have 20 minutes, not a minute more!”. For me it was moment of happiness just to see the Royal Orders, I always loved sparkle, things that glitter, and even if it was transparent plastic, I am fascinated by the sparkle! ?

The curator of the museum saw my love for shiny things and showed me with great pride the Royal Order of the highest degree during the rise of the Kingdom of Russia … I must admit that the Russians, apart from the Spanish and the Italians, had a sense of aesthetics… and for sparkle things as well! Diamonds…

The Curator proudly spoke about their special royal orders collection, which has about 700 original pieces. After a short story about the museum, the lady asked me where I from and when I mentioned the word “Serbia”, she took me to another room where she showed me the Order of St. Sava. I remembered my father’s story that this is the highest order in Serbia and that it was given only to extremely prominent people.

The photographer was around all the time and he did patient shooting of the photos, he was trying to be just a observer, but he showed me all the time with mimics how much time left… I do not like one day trips, I can not easily achieve everything… Of course, because of all glitter and shine of the orders and all those shiny diamonds I forgot on time, so I again “break through” the schedule of our trip and now it was really time to go back to Helsinki.

We were in hurry, so fast cardio last walk through the main streets of Tallinn we reached the station of the bus that took us to the harbour. This is the last picture I managed to make in that hurry, because all of those souvenirs made of wood were interesting to me, so I wanted to share it with you. If I had time, I might have bought a new cutting board, but almost because of the diamonds I stay in Tallinn without hotel! It would just be an adventure!

My dear travellers once again we have come to the end of this second special travel post from Northern Europe. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and we will continue our adventure in Finland and Italy as well.

This one-day trip in Tallinn was successfully completed, we entered in our Megastar and I secretly waved to Tallinn with the desire that we will see soon again! Tired but lucky Tallink Megastar cruiser took us “home” to Helsinki.

At the end of the post I would like to thank the kind staff of Star and Megastar Cruisers that made our journey pleasant on board, although I’m not a swimmer and I have a mild fear of water I felt very safe. If by any chance you decide to visit Helsinki, make sure you will take the opportunity to visit Tallinn, for more information about ships, departures and prices visit their website.

Also, if you are a museum lover and would like to visit a greater number of attractions in Tallinn, take advantage of the special Tallinn tourist card that you can buy at any information tourist center in Tallinn and this sales points. By purchasing a card you get the right to enter certain museums completely for free and for the duration of the card, depending on whether you are purchasing a Tallinn card for a period of 24, 48 or 72h, you have the right to use the transportation completely for free.

As an economist, I always look to save as much as possible; the card is worth paying if you take  only one entry into a museum and a ride by tram or bus, even if you visit two or three museums, or if you have some other landmark, you will understand the real savings that this card provides to you.

How do you like this post? Have you ever visited Tallinn? Did you have chance to enjoy in the magic of the Medieval Gem of Baltic? I would like to share with me your experience! If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you!

Best,

Mr.M

This post is sponsored by Tallinn Tourist Board, Helsinki Tourist Board – My Helsinki, Visit Finland and other respected partners of project #MyHelsinkiResidence which I will mention in future posts. Also I would like to say thank you to Tallink for wonderful collaboration and for amazing opportunity to feel the beauty of travelling with their Star i Megastar cruisers.
For all these beautiful photos, I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II.

 

 

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Letters from Finland: Winter Fairy Tale in Helsinki

Dear my travellers, I hope that you have wisely used this little break and that you prepared for new adventures. Today I’m taking you to the country where is living the most beloved grandpa on the world, a place where the finest chocolates are made from sea salt. Welcome to Finland!

Whoever was able to visit this magical country, will understand love with this amazing city at the first sight! Finnish people are otherwise known for their kindness and the famous role of good hosts. They always try to approach you with a smile on the face and to help you though you may not speak English or Finnish language.

Before I start with today’s post, I would like to thank the Helsinki Tourist Board and Convention BureauMy Helsinki for this exceptional opportunity to feel the beauty of the capital of Finland. Also, I would like to thank all the other partners who have given their unselfish support to this project #MyHelsinkiResidence.

Once again, thanks from the heart! Before this journey, I tried to learn more about this unusual country of Northern Europe, as well as some basic information about the city itself. The only associations that were in my mind before this trip were: Santa Claus and the famous cold weather…

Finland was also my first “station” in Northern Europe, so I did not know exactly what I can expect there. With the help of my colleagues and good friend, famous Croatian blogger Suzana Sab and Serbian Youtuber star Tamara Pavičević, who usually spend a lot of time there because her father – basketball player and coach Mihailo Pavičević – has taken Finlands basketball team to the world championship! These two golden girls were very helpful and only had the patience to answer all my “boring” questions!

The first day was quite exciting because the trip lasted for several hours, because, unfortunately, there are no direct flights between Serbia and Finland. Somehow, little Marko managed to sleep a little on the flights, so I did not immediately get tired of knowing how it would otherwise be on my trips before. We quickly saw the lights of Helsinki, the main capital of Finland.

We just came in our special apartment in Aallonkoti Hotel, we slept very fast as we came, because we knew that next day will be an exciting day. In the morning I got up much earlier than I’m doing it when I’m on the road, so I started to annoy my photographer in the early morning… It was around 5 am in the morning!

As soon as I saw the first rays of the sun, I waited for some appropriate time to go outside to explore Helsinki. First Station – Cathedral of Helsinki (Lutheran Cathedral). That is the famous white building that you can see on almost every postcard from Helsinki and Finland as well. When you search for basic information about Helsinki on the Internet, the first image you will have the opportunity to see is a picture of the Helsinki Cathedral.

My first mission at a very first day here was to visit the sight that marks Helsinki the best. The walking around the city was short, the kind and smiling faces of Finns that morning told me just to follow the tram tracks and at one moment I will see the famous white cathedral. As you can see on the pictures above, we were not the only one that morning we wanted to visit a place that attracted a large number of tourists in Helsinki throughout the year.

The streets of this city are unusual, facades are made partly in a red brick, of course a certain building adorns details that you can just stop for a moment and you will have a feeling like you are in another European country. Ok, the first mission was accomplished, but we also had to rest a bit and we made a little sweet break at the  Karl Frazer café. One of the oldest cafes in Helsinki. Their sweet products are sold all over Finland and their chocolates are well known for their unusual flavours have conquered my heart. If your way leads you to Helsinki, you just must visit this little sweet hedonistic paradise.

After a short and sweet break, it was time for little Marko to make one quick cultural rise, so I decided to visit the Ateneum National Gallery. Many tourists call it “Finnish Louvre”, but I think this museum is a little different. The museum itself is much smaller, but the space is greatly used and has some logical schedule, because it is constantly happening in Louvre to get lost and not to see the specific works of art I came for.

The story of how this museum formed is quite interesting. The Ateneum Museum was opened to the public in 1888, under one roof there were two art schools. One school was a fine arts school, while the other was a school of applied arts.

When the museum was opened, many people felt that it was too far from the center of the city and they did not like it. I think that today everyone is happy with the location of the museum itself because it is located in the centre of the city. Who knows maybe art eventually decided where the “heart” of the today’s Helsinki will be!

Ateneum Museum is an important sight in Helsinki which you should pay a visit. You will spend a wonderful time there maybe few hours and you will not notify how time just flies. The most important part of the museum exhibition is the famous Finnish artist who made this fairy-tale country in the north of Europe famous for.

The picture above is a famous work by a Finnish – Swedish painter Ferdinand von Wright. He was known to the audience for his over-love of birds and landscapes, and he always showed the state of society, through the bird characters. His most famous work titled “The Fighting Capercaillies” can be seen in the picture above. There are several theories that try to explain the plot story of this amazing work, one of the most beautiful stories of great love. As you can see in the picture, there are two capercaillies males who fight for the love of a female… I’m sure that you all heard the phrase “You are like a Capercaillie in love!”. This is a true picture of that expression.

This real little treasury of art in the very heart of Helsinki will change your view of life. The people of Finland are, in fact, quite tied to nature and the cult of nature is very important in their lives. They are trying to live a healthy lifestyle, they are almost not using the cars at all… So, when you are in Finland you will find bicycles on the street, so do not be lazy, get bike and explore Helsinki!

After my cultural blast in Ateneum, I had a chance to see the beauty of the wonderful view from the main hall where artworks of modern art are exhibited. I have to admit that this view on Helsinki is magnificent, we managed to find our place on the bench while my photographer tried to move the bench in the middle of hall… My photographer was annoyed with the asymmetry of location of that bench, so we spent an extra hour time until we could put things in the right place… I do not want to talk about it anymore! ? I’ll just let the picture speak for itself this time!

The time in the museum just flew, I did not want to mention the details about photographing the artwork with Capercaillies because it was impossible to come closer to artwork because of the great interest of visitors. What is “Mona Lisa” in Louvre that are these “The Fighting Capercaillies” in Ateneum. Our first official day in Helsinki ended with the visit to this museum. ?

The next day, we wanted to check all those powerful myths about the magical city on the water, so we headed to the other part of the center that looks directly to the Baltic Sea. Since the previous day’s tiredness, the second day in Helsinki was not started so early for us, but the kind Elisabeth from My Helsinki, told us that it was always the right time to go to the coast of Helsinki.

I must admit she was absolutely right, because we captured the photo above almost in 1 or 2 pm and it look fantastic. We waved back to the tourists on the cruises, while they were trying hard to salute to Finns, maybe I was not a Finn, but those tourist do not know that fact. I think it meant more to them that people from the shore share the same love for them.

We thought that we were the only one who waved to them, but when we turned back, we had realised that my photographer and I were not alone at all, there were children and adults, which in Serbia is said to be “a crew of 7 to 77 years old.” It was interesting to see those people from the countries of northern Europe are warm and with the open hearts and minds as well.

In the picture above, you have the opportunity to see the Uspenski Cathedral, which dates back to the end of the 19th century and represents the most important Orthodox temple in Finland. The church is located on a small hill, access to the church is extremely simple.

The view point in front of the temple is magnificent and now I have the opportunity to share it with all of you. Helsinki is one true gem of Finland, which every year receives an increasing number of tourists from Europe and other parts of the world as well.

Whether you decide to explore the shores, docks and vibrant markets where you can enjoy in special food which is made from fresh fish or simply want to stay in the city center, Helsinki is there to welcome you with open hands and heart.

The capital of the country from which the world’s most beloved grandpa is coming – Santa Claus and the famous White Nordic Nights, which you may not have the opportunity to see completely because of light on the streets and sky must be very clear, that is much more pronounced in rural, more natural parts of Finland, like Lapland. The Helsinki Region is a little different. ?

My dear travellers once again we have come to the end of this first special travel post from Helsinki. Time just flies so fast when you are having a good time! Don’t worry in a couple of days I will publish a new post where we will continue together to enjoy the charms of traveling and we will continue our adventure in Finland and Italy as well.

At the end of the post, I would like to thank the friendly staff from Aallonkotti Hotel Apartments that made our stay pleasant and we felt like we were at home. The concept of hotel is to stay in apartments of different sizes. The size of apartments depends on your needs. The apartment in which we had the opportunity to stay was specially decorated by the well-known Finnish brand Marimekko, which besides its basic activity – making clothes has its own special line for home decoration.

How do you like this post? Have you ever visited Finland? Did you have chance to enjoy in the magic of the Helsinki? I would like to share with me your experience! If you have a question, comment, suggestion or message for me, you can write me down in the comments. Of course, as always you can contact me via mail or social media, which you can find on the CONTACT page.

As I promised we’ll see again in a couple of days, so if something new and interesting happens to me, I promise, I will write to you!

Best,

Mr.M

 

P.S. Finally, I decided to share with you a picture of a special fashion post that I made in collaboration with the famous Finnish brand TURO. More information in one of the following posts.

This post is sponsored by Tourist Board of Helsinki – My Helsinki, Aallonkoti Hotel Apartments, Marimekko company and others partners of My Helsinki organisation which kindly help this #MyHelsinkiResidence project. I will mention all of them in some of the next posts. For all these beautiful photos I used Sony Alpha 7r Mark II camera.

 

 

 

 

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